Common Disabling Medical Conditions

Common Disabling Medical Conditions

Many medical conditions are covered by disability Insurance.  The disability attorneys at Rosen, Moss, Snyder & Bleefeld, LLP, have successfully fought insurance companies for benefits for our clients with some of the following medical conditions.  If you have been diagnosed with any of these conditions, and you are considering applying for, or have been denied disability coverage, contact us today for assistance in evaluating your particular case.

AIDS / HIV

Arthritis – Osteoarthritis arthritis is the  most debilitating and is a gradually progressive deterioration of the affected joints.  Movement becomes increasingly  painful and restricted.The joints of the spine, hands, hips and knees are most frequently affected by osteoarthritis, also commonly called degenerative joint disease.

Asthma – Less air is taken in at each breath and it’s even more difficult to exhale to remove the carbon dioxide trapped in the bronchial tubes and pulmonary alveoli.  An accumulation of this carbon dioxide gas can accumulate and get trapped inside your lungs.  This can become very serious and can lead to heart irregularities, and even death due to respiratory failure.

Back pain – Pain like the kind that prevents you from even being able to get off the bed and onto your feet without breaking into a sweat and wanting to scream.

Bipolar disorder – While the most common symptoms are the manic depressive episodes, someone with this disorder can also have racing thoughts, rapid speech, seem agitated and have bouts of increased physical activity. They might also show poor judgment, have a hard time sleeping, be reckless, show signs of aggression or severe anger, and have a hard time concentrating and get easily distracted. In the depressive phase, the person will typically feel sad, anxious and maybe even guilty. They might have severe feelings of hopelessness and may even be prone to suicide.

Bulging disc – The majority of symptoms caused by a Bulging Disc are related to irritation of spinal nerves. These nerves exit the spine through small holes called foramen. The spinal discs are located next to these nerve passageways. The bulging of the disc material caused by a Bulging Disc can “pinch” these nerves creating a variety of uncomfortable and sometimes debilitating symptoms.

Cancer

Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) – Carpal tunnel syndrome is a progressively painful hand and arm condition caused by a pinched nerve in your wrist.  The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway which is bound by bones and ligaments.  Compression of this causes numbness, pain and, eventually, hand weakness.

Cerebral atrophy – Symptoms of cerebral atrophy are associated with dementia, seizures, and a group of language disorders called the aphasias. Dementia is a progressive impairment of memory and intellectual function that is severe enough to interfere with social and work skills. Memory, orientation, abstraction, ability to learn, visual-spatial perception, and higher executive functions such as planning, organizing and sequencing can also be impaired.

Cervical disc disease – In addition to dealing with the pain of a stiff or inflexible neck, many patients with cervical disc degeneration have numbness, tingling, or even weakness in the neck, arms, or shoulders as a result of nerves in the cervical area becoming irritated or pinched.

Crohn’s disease –  An inflammatory bowel disorder characterized by inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, ulcerations that hinder nutrient absorption, severe diarrhea, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, weight loss and other symptoms in varying degrees. Once you have Crohn’s, you have it for life.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) – The most common symptoms are continuing and recurring fatigue that is not relieved by sleep or bed rest. CFS has also been linked to a weakened immune system and people who suffer from this disorder are more susceptible to all kinds of infections and illnesses.

Chronic Pain – If you suffer from severe and constant pain, you know that it is more than just physical; it can affect your ability to function, and your emotional and psychological levels. You may find that you are limited in your ability to participate in certain daily activities. This loss of independence can result in depression, anxiety, and irritability.

COPD (Pulmonary Disease) – People with COPD have an increased incidence of respiratory infections, including colds, flu and pneumonia which can increase damage to the lungs

Cystic fibrosis – Cystic fibrosis is a debilitating illness that affects both men and women. Usually beginning with simple complications, it usually develops into major failures in the digestive and respiratory systems and affects people at different degrees.

Degenerative disc disease – see also Arthritis

Dementia – see also Bipolar Disorder

Depression – Depression is identified by overwhelming negative feelings, thoughts and behaviors that can impact daily functioning to the point that symptoms are debilitating for the individual. Depressed individuals may have symptoms that include body aches and pains, excessive sleeping, fatigue, difficulty eating and restlessness. Physical symptoms can have a huge impact on your ability to function throughout the day.

Diabetes – One potentially debilitating symptom that is often associated with Diabetes, typically after diagnosis, is poor circulation. This unfortunately can lead to the amputation of extremities.

Epilepsy – the side effects of epilepsy medications — can cause problems in learning, memory and behavior, and indelibly alter development.

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)

Fibromyalgia – The most common symptom of fibromyalgia is deep muscular pains that may be throbbing, shooting, stabbing or burning. The pain is often most severe in the morning and in muscle groups that are used in repetitive actions. Fibromyalgia causes widespread pain in the soft tissues and severe, debilitating fatigue

Glaucoma – Glaucoma is one of the most common eye diseases and a leading cause of blindness. An increase in fluid pressure in the eye (intraocular pressure or IOP) leads to damage to the optic nerve, causing loss of vision.

Headaches – Serious headaches can interfere with your activities of daily life.  They can result in lost productivity at work and enormous health care visits and costs.

Hearing impairment – the greatest single handicap in hearing loss is psychological and can be virtually pervasive in all aspect of your life.

Heart disease

Hepatitis – The acute disease is not the only way that hepatitis B affects your health. Some people, with chronic hepatitis, do not experience acute symptoms but may lose weight, feel tired, have abdominal pain and jaundice, and experience liver damage. In some of these cases the disease continues to damage more of the liver over a period of 15 years or more, until death ensues prematurely from liver failure or liver cancer.

Herniated disc – A herniated or bulging disc occurs when one of the discs between your vertebrae develops a weak spot and pops out beyond its normal perimeter and can limit your ability to live life to the fullest.

High blood pressure / Hypertension – High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is dangerous because it makes the heart work harder to pump blood to the body and it contributes to hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) and the development of heart failure.  Stress plays an important role in your blood pressure being high.

Hip replacement – see also chronic pain

Hodgkin’s disease – In Hodgkin’s lymphoma, cells in the lymphatic system grow abnormally and may spread beyond the lymphatic system. As Hodgkin’s lymphoma progresses, it compromises your body’s ability to fight infection.

Hypertensive cardiovascular disease – see also High Blood Pressure/Hypertension

Incontinence – The two most common types of urinary incontinence are urgency incontinence and stress incontinence.  For people with stress incontinence (coughing, sneezing, running or heavy lifting causes urine to leak) treatment options may involve lifestyle changes, including certain exercises and surgery. Prescription medicines that may work for urgency incontinence symptoms do not treat stress incontinence symptoms.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) – see also Crohn’s Disease

Kidney disease

Knee disorder / replacement – see also chronic pain

Leukemia

Liver disease

Lumbar disc disease – see also degenerative disc disease

Lumbar radiculopathy – see also back pain, chronic pain.  Lumbar radiculopathy refers to pain in the lower extremities in a dermatomal pattern. A dermatome is a specific area in the lower extremity innervated by a specific lumbar nerve. This pain is caused by compression of the roots of the spinal nerves in the lumbar region of the spine.
Lung disease (all kinds)

Lupus – As many as 80 percent of people with lupus experience fatigue. For some people with lupus, fatigue is their main symptom and can be debilitating, even to the point of forcing them to stop working.

Lyme disease – symptoms can develop if the disease is not diagnosed and treated early. These include fever, severe headache and stiff neck, certain heart irregularities, temporary paralysis of facial muscles, pain with numbness or weakness in the arms or legs, loss of concentration or memory problems, and, most commonly, Lyme arthritis.

Macular edema / degeneration – This condition occurs when blood vessels in the eye start to leak fluid, allowing fluid to build up in the macula. This fluid causes the macula to swell and thicken, leading to blurred and distorted vision. The eye cannot express the excess fluid, and the condition will get worse if it is not treated.

Manic disorder – see also Bipolar Disorder

Menieres disease – Vertigo, often the most debilitating symptom of Menieres disease, forces the sufferer to lie down. Vertigo attacks can lead to severe nausea, vomiting, and sweating and can come on with little or no warning. Tinnitus, (ringing or a roaring sound in the ear), causes great frustration. The person can’t hear above the internal noise and may get left out of conversations and activities. Not to mention that the noise itself is very irritating. That causes stress. Tinnitus can be a very difficult problem to treat in many individuals and can be quite disrupting to their lifestyle.

Meningitis – Meningitis is simply the inflammation of the “meninges” lining surrounding the brain, and the spinal cord. This can cause disability or even prove fatal.

Migraine (all kinds-see also headaches)

Multiple myeloma – Multiple myeloma occurs when one type of white blood cell that grows in your bone marrow (a plasma cell) reproduces without stopping and causes damage to other organs. In most patients, myeloma is found in more than one location and is therefore called multiple myeloma.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) –

Myofascial pain syndrome (MPS) – see also fibromyalgia and chronic pain.  Myofascial syndrome is a pain disorder that affects the muscles and fascia throughout your body. Fascia is like a spider web that surrounds the bones, tissues, organs, and blood vessels throughout the body. Myofascial pain syndrome can attack and cause degeneration of certain areas of the fascia, resulting in chronic pain and a variety of other symptoms.

Neuropathy – can start with something as simple as a tingling sensation in the toes or in the balls of the feet that eventually spreads up the legs towards the trunk of your body.  It can appear as weakness or heaviness in muscles throughout the body and be accompanied by cramping, especially in the feet, legs and hands.  Skin can become sensitive to the touch and appear to be prickly, burning, tingling or sharp stabbing sensations that usually worsen at night.  It can cause difficulty walking and/or problems with balance or coordination.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) – OCD is a chronic, or long-term, illness that can take over your life, hurt your relationships, and limit your ability to work or go to school. It is a type of mental illness that causes repeated unwanted thoughts. To get rid of those thoughts, a person does the same tasks over and over.

Osteoarthritis – see also Arthritis

Pancreatitis – Patients frequently experience constant pain in the upper abdomen that radiates to the back. In some patients, the pain may be disabling.

Paralysis – disability benefits for paralysis depend on the area of your body that is paralyzed and how it affects how you function

Parkinson’s disease – Symptoms of Parkinson’s disease include muscle rigidity, tremors, and changes in speech and gait.

Peritonitis – Typically in the Pelvis, peritonitis is the inflammation and infection of the peritoneum, the membrane lining the abdomen in the pelvic area.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – The emotional numbing of PTSD may present as a lack of interest in activities that used to be enjoyed (anhedonia), emotional deadness, distancing oneself from people, and/or a sense of a foreshortened future (like not being able to think about the future or make future plans, not believing you will live much longer).

Psoriasis – One out of 50 adults suffer from a psychological, debilitating skin condition called psoriasis. The area may feel itchy and may have a burning sensation.  You also never know how long it will last; it may last two days, two months or two years. The worst part for those afflicted by psoriasis is that the condition is persistent and will likely last a lifetime. This means flare-ups can occur anytime.

Psychosis – Psychotic disorders include severe mental disorders which are characterized by extreme impairment of a person’s ability to think clearly, respond emotionally, communicate effectively, understand reality, and behave appropriately.

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) – symptoms, include pain (often “burning”), tenderness, and swelling of an extremity with varying degrees of sweating, warmth and/or coolness, flushing, discoloration, and shiny skin. In its atrophic stage RSD can cause loss of motion and function of the involved hand or foot, and/or significant osteoporosis.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) – see also Arthritis

Schizophrenia – see also Psychosis

Seizures – depending on the type of seizures you are experiencing, you may be considered disabled because of the length and severity of those seizures

Sickle cell disease – can lead to a host of complications, including:  acute chest pain, fever and difficulty breathing, pulmonary hypertension, organ damage, blindness, skin ulcers and gallstones.

Spinal stenosis – With lumbar stenosis, the spinal nerve roots in the lower back are compressed, or choked, and this can produce symptoms of sciatica (tingling, weakness or numbness that radiates from the low back and into the buttocks and legs) especially with activity. Cervical spinal stenosis can be far more dangerous because of the compressing of the spinal cord. Spinal cord stenosis may lead to serious symptoms, including major body weakness or even paralysis.

Sleep apnea – sleep apnea is a debilitating breathing disorder that has far-reaching effects on health. It has been linked to high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat and heart failure. It can cause fatigue, morning headaches, excessive daytime sleepiness, snoring and memory problems.  If you suffer from chronic pain, sleep apnea can make that pain more acute.

Stroke – depending on the permanent after effects of a stroke, you may be eligible for long term disability benefits

Temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ) – TMJ is a disorder of the jaw joint and chewing muscles.  Some patients suffer from Myofascial pain, a derangement of the joint that may involve a displaced disc, or dislocated jaw.  Persons who have been diagnosed with TMJ may also have other health problems that co-exist with it, such as chronic fatigue syndrome, sleep disturbances or fibromyalgia.

Vestibular Dysfunction – typically cause dizziness, loss of balance, and diminished functional independence and reflect a disturbance of the central vestibular pathways in the brain.